View Full Version : my new toy (HTPC)

05-10-2006, 04:48 PM
i know these have been around for quite a while now, but i just got around to finally putting a HTPC together. so far, i'm very thrilled with it. i already have a HD/DVR/digital cable box, but i wanted the MCE interface for all my music. all of the other features merely serve as a bonus. i even installed the mceWeather (http://www.windowsmarketplace.com/prices.aspx?itemId=2150286) plugin, which gives me up to date weather reports, forecasts, and satellite info at the touch of a button. i'm still working on getting all my mp3's tagged properly, but it's going well so far. Tag&Rename (http://www.softpointer.com/tr.htm) is definitely the way to go if you want everything to show up correctly in MCE.

anyway, here are the specs and some pics....

- 2.8GHz 1MB L2/800MHz FSB Intel Pentium 4 CPU
- Kingston 512MB DDR400 RAM
- MSI PM8M-V Motherboard
- Seagate 200GB 7200RPM Hard Drive
- PNY GeForce 6200 128MB Video Card
- Hauppauge Win-TV PVR-150 MCE FM/TV Tuner Card
- AOpen Cobra AW870LP 7.1 Sound Card
- NEC 16x DVD±R DVD Burner
- ASPIRE X-QPACK case w/ 420W PSU
- Windows XP Media Center Edition
- Microsoft Windows Media Center Remote Control

the PC:
putting it together was pretty easy. the case is a wonderful piece of work. it's really compact, but still leaves lots of room for air circulation and wires. the pull-out motherboard tray was a lifesaver. the transparent sides and top add a nice touch, as well.

(click thumbnails to enlarge)

http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-1_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-1.jpg) http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-2_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-2.jpg)
http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-3_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-3.jpg) http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-4_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-4.jpg)
http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-5_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-5.jpg) http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-6_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-6.jpg)
http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-7_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-7.jpg) http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-8_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/htpc-8.jpg)

05-10-2006, 04:49 PM
MCE interface:
for the most part, MCE is very user-friendly. everything can be done with a remote control, but i keep a mouse and keyboard around just in case. in these screenshots, you can see the main menu, album list, tv guide, tv screencap, weather forecast, satellite data, and FM radio.

(click thumbnails to enlarge)

http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-menu_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-menu.jpg) http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-albumlist_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-albumlist.jpg)
http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-guide_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-guide.jpg) http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-tv_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-tv.jpg)
http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-weather1_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-weather1.jpg) http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-weather2_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-weather2.jpg)
http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-radio_thumb.jpg (http://imondepression.com/images/htpc/mce-radio.jpg)

05-10-2006, 04:49 PM
looks good

05-11-2006, 04:36 AM

05-11-2006, 03:50 PM
Looks pretty cool, I may have to make one of these w/ the extra crap I have laying around.